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I have a GH of 24. If you have higher it might hurt some plants but none
have been hurt per se in any way that I can tell from the high GH.
The whole thing over high GH and KH causing harm to the plants is plain
rubbish. Lack of CO2 perhaps but not hard water. So if you have have hard
water you can rule out that as some cause of why your plants do not grow.
CO2 or nutrients(namely macro's) are the two big problems. Keep those
stable, and you will do extremely well with plants. Lights, algae herbivores
etc are pretty consistent and cause less problems. I've had GH's in the 9
range for quite some time. Eustralis is the only suspect I've come across
but it's a funny plant anyhow perhaps not relevant to the issue, but I think
so. It may not like my low NO3's also but it has always had trouble after a
water change(stunted tips). It can do very well for awhile......then it gets
stunted at some point. I gave some to a newbie and he's doing super with it.
He has a nice big stand, but not me:) He test well and let's me know his
parameters etc and I tell him what to add etc.
I could soften my water etc but I'm not going to do that for one stem plant
that needs more room than I have in my tanks as it is. But every other
plants does well. And the crypts do very well. I'll trade one funny stem
plant for them any day.
But if you simply take care of the other issues, CO2, lighting macro's etc,
then you can focus on one variable at a time. You'll find after you keep
those stable the other so called "problems" are myths in most cases. Hard
water is certainly one such myth.